Speakers / Topics: Entrepreneurship

It’s not easy to build a business from the ground up. Our entrepreneurs share stories and lessons learned from the trenches on the journey to success.

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Zahra Al-Harazi

Entrepreneur and Transformative Leadership Expert

The road to real leadership is rarely a straight one. Among Canada’s most successful entrepreneurs, few have faced more obstacles than Zahra Al-Harazi. With a no-holds-barred attitude, Zahra helps people and organizations realize their potential fo...

Zahra Al-Harazi

Jordan Axani

Mental Wellness and Leadership Expert | Focus of World's Most Viral Human-Interest Story

Jordan Axani has a long track-record of bold acts that move and inspire people. Whether becoming one of the youngest people to bike across Canada, or being at the centre of the most viral human-interest story in the internet’s history (the tale of ...

Jordan Axani

Mark Brand

Social Entrepreneur | Restaurateur

Mark Brand is one of North America’s foremost social entrepreneurs. With eleven businesses under his belt, he is an example of a new form of leadership that encompasses good in every step. Determined to breathe new life into our struggling and...

Mark Brand

Leonard Brody

Business and Technology Visionary

Leonard Brody has been called “a controversial leader of the new world order”. He is an award- winning entrepreneur, venture capitalist, bestselling author and a two-time Emmy nominated media visionary. In his compelling, customized talks — for...

Leonard Brody

Erin Bury

Technology and Marketing Expert | Start-Up Fanatic

Named one of Marketing Magazine’s “Top 30 Under 30”, Erin Bury is a marketer, former technology journalist, and startup enthusiast. A monthly columnist for the Financial Post and a tech commentator on CTV News, Erin shares the ins-and-outs ...

Erin Bury

Ben Casnocha

Entrepreneur | Co-Author of The Alliance: Managing Talent in the Networked Age

Ben Casnocha is an award-winning entrepreneur and author from Silicon Valley. BusinessWeek named him”one of America’s top young entrepreneurs,” while PoliticsOnline called him one of the “25 most influential people in the worl...

Ben Casnocha

Bob Chapman

Chairman and CEO of Barry-Wehmiller Companies

Spend just five minutes with Bob Chapman, chairman and CEO of Barry-Wehmiller Companies, and you’ll discover two things: His optimism is infectious and his passion for providing a fulfilling work environment for his employees is palpable. These two...

Bob Chapman

David Chilton

Former “Dragon” on CBC TV’s Dragons’ Den | Bestselling Author of The Wealthy Barber

Whether it’s helping millions of Canadians achieve personal financial success or investing in low-fat cookbooks, David Chilton has always had a knack for recognizing great ventures, a skill he leveraged as a “dragon” on CBC television’s #1 hi...

David Chilton Finance Speaker

Donald Cooper

Business Management, Marketing, and Customer Service Expert

Drawing from his unique experience as both a world-class manufacturer and award-winning retailer, Donald Cooper delivers the “straight goods” on how to sell more, manage smarter, grow your bottom line…and have a life. With wisdom, h...

Donald Cooper

Barbara Corcoran

Real Estate Entrepreneur | Branding Expert | Shark Tank “Shark”

Barbara Corcoran’s got straight D’s in high school and college and 20 jobs by the time she turned 23. But it was her 21st job that would make her one of the most successful entrepreneurs in the country–she borrowed $1,000 and quit her job...

Barbara Corcoran

Matthew Corrin

Founder and CEO, Freshii

Matthew Corrin is changing the way the world eats, and building a billion dollar brand while he’s at it. The founder and CEO of Freshii, Matthew started the franchise when he was just 23 years old, and hadn’t yet worked a day in the restaurant bu...

Matthew Corrin

Bruce Croxon

Former "Dragon" | Host, The Disruptors | Partner, Round13 Capital

Bruce Croxon wants to invest in the next Canadian wave. The co-founder of the wildly successful dating site Lavalife, and a former “Dragon” on CBC TV’s Dragons’ Den, shares his informed insights into what it takes to succeed in today’s dema...

Bruce Croxon

Johnny Cupcakes

CEO, Johnny Cupcakes | Award Winning Entrepreneur & Brand Hysteria Expert

If you dream of inspiring cult-like brand loyalty—the kind that involves mile-long queues and even permanent tattoos— then Johnny “Cupcakes” Earle is for you. The founder of the world-renowned tee-shirt brand Johnny Cupcakes, Johnny&#...

Johnny "Cupcakes" Earle

Arlene Dickinson

"Dragon" on Dragons' Den | CEO of Venture Communications

“The purpose of marketing is to deliver business results,” says Arlene Dickinson, renowned CBC “Dragon” and one of Canada’s most successful communications entrepreneurs. Whether explaining how to leverage marketing in even the toughest of e...

Arlene Dickinson

Harley Finkelstein

Chief Operating Officer, Shopify | “Dragon” on Next Gen Den

Harley Finkelstein started from the ground up. To put himself through law school, he sold t-shirts using Shopify—an e-commerce platform that was relatively unknown at the time. That decision in 2005 ultimately led him to become Shopify’s Chief Op...

Harley Finkelstein

Mandy Gilbert

Entrepreneur, CEO & Innovator

Having successfully built two international businesses from the ground up, Mandy Gilbert has been recognized as a United Nations Global Accelerator and ranked as one of Canada’s Top Female Entrepreneurs on Canadian Business’ Profit 500 list and C...

Mandy Gilbert

Manu “Swish” Goswami

Startup Canada's Young Entrepreneur of the Year

Manu (Swish) Goswami has built a multi-hyphenate career. Just 21 years old, he is already a serial entrepreneur; a LinkedIn Youth Editor; a past Fortune 500 consultant for Google and American Express; a venture capitalist; a UN Youth Ambassador; and ...

Manu "Swish" Goswami

Cameron Herold

Author of Double Double | Former COO of 1-800-GOT-JUNK?

Cameron Herold is known around the world as “The Business Growth Guru.” He is the mastermind behind hundreds of companies’ exponential growth, helping to guide organizations to double their profit and double their revenue in just thr...

Cameron Herold

Michael Hyatt

Leadership | Change and Innovation Visionary

Michael Hyatt became a self-made millionaire by building two highly successful tech firms that he sold for $500 million dollars. Today, Michael ranks as one of Canada’s top entrepreneurs, and was a celebrated “Dragon” on CBC’s online sensatio...

Michael Hyatt

Daymond John

Founder of FUBU | Shark on Shark Tank

From humble beginnings to a self-made multimillionaire and a starring role on ABC’s hit show Shark Tank, Daymond John sets standards of excellence in fashion, branding, marketing, consulting, entertainment, and beyond. An industry leader, bestselli...

Daymond John

Earvin “Magic” Johnson

NBA Legend | Hall of Famer | Entrepreneur and Philanthropist

Earvin “Magic” Johnson has become the most powerful African-American businessman in the world. Having left the basketball court for the boardroom, Johnson has successfully parlayed his skills and tenacity on the court into the business world as C...

Earvin “Magic” Johnson NBA Speaker

Kaihan Krippendorff

Strategy and Innovation Expert

Kaihan Krippendorff is one of the most in-demand business speakers in the world. A bestselling author, internationally recognized thought-leader, and a sought-after strategic advisor, Kaihan helps organizations and individuals thrive in today’s er...

Peter Legge

Award-Winning Motivation and Business Speaker

Award-winning motivation and business speaker Peter Legge shows audiences how to take control of even the most challenging situations to rise to the top and achieve success. Famed for his ability to inspire healthy, productive habits and a winning at...

Peter Legge

Isaac Lidsky

Visionary Entrepreneur and Bestselling Author

Isaac Lidsky “may possess the most eclectic resume in entrepreneurship” according to Inc. Magazine. For example, he graduated from Harvard College at 19 years old with a degree in mathematics and computer science; and later graduated from...

Isaac Lidsky

Josh Linkner

Award-Winning Entrepreneur | Creativity Expert

To Josh Linkner, creativity and innovation are the lifeblood of all human progress, and as such, he’s spent his career harnessing the spirit of creative disruption. The five-time successful tech entrepreneur and CEO delivers a clear call to action ...

Josh Linkner

Lainey Lui

Co-Host, The Social | Correspondent, etalk | Founder, LaineyGossip

Elaine “Lainey” Lui has been breaking entertainment news since the launch of her world-famous celebrity gossip website, LaineyGossip.com, and as a correspondent on CTV’s Canada’s #1 entertainment show, etalk. Also a co-host on CTV’s The Soc...

Lainey Lui

Lital Marom

Corporate Innovator | Digital Transformation Expert

A thought leader on agile business processes, digital transformation, and the future of work, Lital Marom is an expert at helping organizations unlock the potential of their business by leverage emerging technologies and new economic models. In her p...

Lital Marom

Lane Merrifield

“Dragon” on CBC’s Dragons’ Den | Tech Entrepreneur

The newest “dragon” to join CBC’s hit show Dragons’ Den, Lane Merrifield is one of Canada’s leading tech entrepreneurs. He is the founder of Club Penguin, the largest children’s online social network. At age 28, he sold it to Disney for $...

Lane Merrifield

Dennis Moseley-Williams

Experience Economy Specialist

What inspires companies, and what makes them inspiring? Dennis Moseley-Williams shows organizations how to create transformative experiences for clients, customers and employees. Captivating audiences with his passion, humour and vivid examples of st...

Adam Nanjee

Technology and Innovation Futurist | Scaling Global Businesses | Promoting Global Diversity

Adam Nanjee is building Canada to be the next global technology leader. As the former Head of North America’s largest innovations hub at MaRS Discovery District and currently as Senior Vice President for Zafin, one of North America’s top financia...

Frank O’Dea

Innovative Entrepreneur | Humanitarian

Frank O’Dea’s story of triumph over adversity in business and in his personal life inspires audiences around the world. Against all odds, O’Dea went from being a homeless panhandler to a successful entrepreneur and a founder of The Second Cup c...

Frank O'Dea

Kevin O’Leary

“Shark” on ABC's Shark Tank | Journalist and Television Personality | Chairman of O'Leary Funds

He’s opinionated and ruthless, and he hungers for big deals. Yet he made millions helping children learn how to read. Nothing if not a polarizing force, Kevin O’Leary pulls no punches when it comes to the good, the bad, and the ugly as it pertain...

Janet Podleski

Bestselling Author | Award-Winning Entrepreneur | TV Host Eat, Shrink & Be Merry

How did two sisters with no formal culinary training, no publishing track record, no food industry experience and—most importantly—no money, end up writing and publishing one of Canada’s bestselling cookbooks of all time? Janet Podleski’s cap...

Janet Podleski

David Rocco

Celebrity Chef | Hit Television Host | Bestselling Author

A trailblazer who breaks down barriers to bring people together, international celebrity chef David Rocco brings his passion for food, travel, and adventure to millions of homes through his worldwide hit television programs David Rocco’s Dolce Vita...

David Rocco

Michele Romanow

"Dragon", CBC's Dragons’ Den | Co-Founder & President, Clearbanc

Tech titan Michele Romanow is an engineer and a serial entrepreneur who started five companies before her 33rd birthday. A “Dragon” on CBC’s hit show Dragons’ Den, Michele is the co-founder of Clearbanc, which in 2018 gave entrepreneurs more ...

Michele Romanow

Carol Roth

Panel Moderator | Business Media Personality

An authoritative voice in business and news media, Carol Roth is a highly sought-after panel moderator and emcee who always ensures that “business is never boring”, making her time and time again s favourite with all audiences. She is known for p...

Carol Roth

Sébastien Sasseville

Athlete | Change Management and Sales Specialist | Author

Sébastien Sasseville inspires organizations to create and maintain performance in changing environments. An endurance athlete, his extraordinary accomplishments—which include summiting Mount Everest, completing the mythical Sahara race, and runni...

Sebastien Sasseville

Patrick Schwerdtfeger

Business Futurist

Patrick Schwerdtfeger is a business futurist specializing in technology trends such as big data, artificial intelligence, blockchain, social media, and disruptive innovation. He was an early, popular media commentator on financial services, real ...

David Segal

Co-Founder, DAVIDsTEA | Retail Visionary and Branding Expert

David Segal is an entrepreneur and retail thought-leader. He is best known for bringing radical innovation to a 5,000 year old product category with the launch of DAVIDsTEA, the company he co-founded in 2008. Segal takes audiences through the entrepr...

Graham Sherman

Co-Owner, Tool Shed Brewing Company

Graham Sherman is a self-professed “high level geek” who has used his love of technology to help him master the craft of brewing artisan beer. Together with his partner, Graham launched the Tool Shed Brewery four years ago, and has never looked b...

Graham Sherman

John Stanton

Founder of the Running Room

John Stanton created his first meeting place for runners over 25 years ago out of the back of a shop.  Now, the Running Room boasts 100 stores and 1,300 employees in Canada and the USA, and have helped encourage nearly a million Canadians to get fit...

Barbara Stegemann

Top Game Changer CBC's Dragons' Den | CEO and Founder, The 7 Virtues

Barbara Stegemann’s entrepreneurial vision was formed after her best friend — a soldier — was severely wounded in Afghanistan. Understanding that supporting Afghanistan’s economy was key to building stability for its people, Stegemann created...

Barbara Stegemann

Bill Taylor

Entrepreneur | Co-Founder, Fast Company | Bestselling Author

Bill Taylor has encouraged a generation of executives and company-builders to think differently about change, leadership, and the new world of work. A spirited and hard-charging entrepreneur, Bill co-founded Fast Company, easily the most influential ...

Bill Taylor

Nicole Verkindt

Founder, OMX | “Dragon”, Next Gen Den

Nicole Verkindt is passionate about leveraging the talents of entrepreneurs. The founder of OMX (Offset Market Exchange) and a Dragon on CBC’s Next Gen Den, she understands the powerful role entrepreneurs have in growing the economy and helping to ...

Nicole Verkindt

John Warrillow

Award-Winning Entrepreneur and Advisor

John Warrilow has more than 20 years of research experience into the small and medium business market. As the founder of The Value Builder System, a cloud-based assessment tool business owners can use to assess the “sellability” of their ...

John Warrillow

Dave Wilkin

Founder of TenThousandCoffees.com | Social Entrepreneur | Mentoring Expert

Dave Wilkin turns all kinds of organizations into engagement engines. A celebrated social entrepreneur, he’s the founder of TenThousandCoffees.com, the world’s largest peer-to-peer mentoring service. With deep experience working with prominent br...

W. Brett Wilson

CBC TV “Dragon Emeritus” | Celebrated Entrepreneur | Philanthropist

Brett Wilson is a celebrated Canadian entrepreneur, respected philanthropist, and the all-time leading deal maker on CBC’s hit TV show, Dragons’ Den.  Within a penchant for investing in people rather than projects, Wilson is proof that it’s ...

Steve Wozniak

Co-founder, Apple Computer | Chief Scientist, Fusion-io

Before laptops fit into briefcases, before iPads fit into purses, and before iPhones fit into back pockets, computers were as big as vending machines, and certainly not portable. In 1977, Steve Wozniak, the co-founder of Apple (with Steve Jobs) chang...

Steve Wozniak